[Jeju’s Nature] Come to relive the birth of Jeju at the Jeju Stone Park

Located near the central mountain, east of Jeju, the Jeju Stone Museum was established in 2006 to allow tourists to learn and experience the culture that surrounds stones in Jeju. The plans to construct the park were conceived in 1998, and finally opened its doors in 2006. The entire park spans about one million pyongs (816 acres) through pristine grasslands and hills. There is an expansive parking lot gave me the impression that this establishment was built to accommodate a large number of visitors. 

If you proceed from the parking lot, there are restrooms and ticket booths in the form of choga[1] houses.The Stone Park is largely comprised of three different courses, the Stone Museum, a Stone Culture Exhibition, an outdoor exhibition, and the Jeju’s traditional hut.The entire park consumes about two to three hours to tour. It is recommended that, if opportunity permits, multiple visits be taken to explore it to the fullest.

▲ Entrance

 The font size did not do justice to the expansiveness of the park. 

▲ Trail to the ticket booth

 Because the Stone Park was arranged to optimize the surrounding’s natural features, it feels like a walk through a forest. I recommend comfortable footwear for visitors. 

▲ Choga Style Restroom

 The restrooms, ticket booth, and other outdoor structures are all choga to recreate the images of old Jeju.

 

▲ Stone Culture Museum

 The museum is the first stop upon entering. As depicted in the photograph, in an effort to preserve the unimpeded landscape, the museum was constructed underground.

 

▲ Entrance to the Museum 

▲ Interior of the underground museum

There is a miniaturized representation of the Jeju Island built in the center of the museum. Surrounding this circular structure are scientific data, samples, and explanations to help elucidate visitors. 

▲ Exhibition

 

▲ Meteor

 I saw a meteor for the first time in my life. They resembled a rock, but I felt eerie knowing that they had alien origins. 

▲ Model of a volcano

Because Jeju is a volcanic island, there is an abundance of information on lava and volcanos.

 

▲ Stones in the forms of heads

The immense variety of stones is sure to please any rock enthusiast. There are so many unique rocks collected here, as if all the special rocks in Korea were gathered.

 

▲ Dolmen 

The outdoor exhibition chronologically displays the culture surrounding rocks. The photograph above is of the dolmen used for burial rituals.

 

 ▲ Museum in the distance

 

▲ Outdoor Exhibition

 The outdoor exhibition houses stones from prehistoric to present times.

 I was reminded of the history lessons in school. 

▲ Visitor’s trail

 

▲ Grave

 Jeju has a burial tradition unlike those of other regions. The grave is usually surrounded by a stone wall, along with an anthropomorphic stone carving.

 

 ▲ Korean Crocks

▲ Five Hundred General Gallery

Although unrelated to stones, you can enjoy various pieces of art in the Five Hundred Gallery. 

 

Just touring the park on foot is rather exhausting. Each course takes about 50 minutes to complete, so the entire walkthrough lasts for about three hours. If you would like to learn about the nature and history of Jeju’s stones, be sure to visit the Jeju Stone Park.

Address: 2023 Namjo-ro Jocheon-eup, Jeju, Jeju-do South Korea

Phone: 82-64-710-7731~3

Jeju Tourism Organization Website: http://www.jejutour.go.kr/ http://www.ijto.or.kr/

 

[1] Choga: the style of housing prevalent in old Korea. It is essentially a house of clay with a straw-thatched roof.

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